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March 11, 2008 / Toby Dayton

2008 Daily Newspaper Death Toll: 4.5

Today’s climb in the daily newspaper death toll is a mere 1/2 point because it doesn’t perfectly qualify as a paid-circulation, metro daily newspaper that has ceased publishing a paper every day of the week. It does, however, garner a 1/2 point because it’s a free-circulation daily newspaper that has slowly, over the past few years, moved from publishing a newspaper every day to, as they recently announced, just twice a week.

As covered in ftm, The Tracy Post, a daily paper covering California’s San Joaquin Valley, announced in February of 2006 that it would stop publishing on Mondays, notoriously the slowest news day of the week and consequently the worst advertising day of the week. Last fall, the paper announced that it would only publish a paper three days a week – Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday. That experiment failed just as miserably, and the paper recently announced that it will only publish on Wednesdays and Saturdays. I’ll venture a guess and say that this experiment, too, will fail and that the Tracy Post should save itself the anguish, time, stress, and financial losses and just stop publishing altogether.

Interestingly, there are 2 other paid-circulation dailies serving the same region, and both of those papers have announced significant staff cuts in order to align cost structures with declining advertising revenues. So the Tracy Post  may not be a perfect fit, but I think it justifies a 1/2 point in the 2008 daily newspaper death toll.

[tags]Daily Newspaper Death Toll, San Joaquin Valley, California Newspapers, Tracy Post, Free Circulation Papers, Shuttered Newspapers, Dying Newspapers, A Changing Media Landscape, Newspapers Are Dying A Slow Death[/tags]